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NORTH AMERICAN BIOLOGICALS ACQUIRES PHARMACEUTICAL PRODUCT FOR HEPATITIS FROM ABBOTT LABORATORIES; ABBOTT TO OWN 16 PERCENT OF NABI STOCK

NORTH AMERICAN BIOLOGICALS ACQUIRES PHARMACEUTICAL PRODUCT FOR HEPATITIS FROM ABBOTT LABORATORIES; ABBOTT TO OWN 16 PERCENT OF NABI STOCK
 MIAMI, Oct. 8 /PRNewswire/ -- North American Biologicals, Inc. (NABI) (NASDAQ: NBIO) today announced it has entered the human pharmaceutical market through the acquisition from Abbott Laboratories of H-BIG(R), a proprietary plasma-based product for Hepatitis B. In the transaction, Abbott will acquire two million NABI shares, or approximately 16 percent of the shares outstanding following the transaction. In addition, NABI has obtained from Abbott the exclusive right to acquire HIVIG(tm), an experimental product which may prevent the transmission of AIDS from HIV-positive mothers to unborn infants.
 "We view our entry into the pharmaceutical market as a major milestone in NABI's evolution as a health care company," said David Gury, NABI's chairman, president, and CEO. "For more than 20 years, NABI has been a leading provider of the plasma used by pharmaceutical companies to produce therapeutic products. Now, NABI is applying both its access to high-quality human plasma and its expertise in testing plasma, to develop and commercialize its own proprietary immune globulin products for the prevention and treatment of serious infections."
 Immune globulin products are plasma-based products which contain a natural range of antibodies produced in the body against a particular infectious disease. The use of immune globulins has increased dramatically in recent years, as scientists and clinicians have been able to identify and access the desired antibodies to treat a range of conditions. The worldwide market for immune globulin products is estimated at more than $500 million.
 "With H-BIG as the first step, NABI is positioned to play an expanding role in the fast-growing market for immune globulin therapeutic products," Gury added. He noted that in recent months NABI has prepared for this strategic expansion by adding key executives to NABI's management team with pharmaceutical industry experience in research, regulatory affairs and marketing.
 H-BIG (Hepatitis B immune globulin) is an FDA-licensed product currently used to provide passive immunity from exposure to Hepatitis B, H-BIG has been marketed by Abbott for prophylactic use for adults and children exposed to the virus, and for infants born to Hepatitis B positive mothers. It is often used in conjunction with Hepatitis B vaccine in order to provide the patient with both immediate and long- term immunity. The product currently has sales of approximately $5 million per year. NABI believes that sales can be significantly increased through additional medical indications and enhanced international marketing efforts.
 HIVIG (HIV immune globulin) is intended as a means of providing passive immunity to unborn infants or neonates whose mothers are HIV positive. NABI's right to acquire HIVIG from Abbott is subject to Abbott's receiving satisfactory immunity from civil lawsuits for clinical and commercial uses of HIVIG.
 Abbott will receive royalties from NABI based upon sales of the acquired products. Abbott has also agreed to various standstill measures, including agreements not to acquire additional NABI shares without NABI Board approval and to vote its NABI shares on most matters in the same proportion as other NABI shareholders.
 North American Biologicals, Inc., headquartered in Miami, is the world's largest independent provider of human blood plasma elements to the health care industry.
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 /CONTACT: David J. Gury, president, or Alfred J. Fernandez, VP finance, of North American Biologicals, 305-625-5303; or Traci Lance of Abbott Laboratories, 708-938-3895; or Marcia Kean, executive VP of Feinstein Partners, 617-577-8110 for NABI/
 (NBIO) CO: North American Biologicals, Inc.; Abbott Laboratories ST: Florida IN: MTC SU: TNM


DD -- NE003 -- 0271 10/08/92 08:58 EDT
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Date:Oct 8, 1992
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